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How might high potassium affect me emotionally?

If you are currently living with other health conditions, a diagnosis of high potassium (hyperkalemia) may feel like yet another addition to the challenges you already have to face.

However, by talking to your doctor to find a suitable long-term treatment, you may feel increasingly confident about managing your potassium level over time.

If you’re finding things difficult at any point, your doctor will also be able to discuss coping strategies and recommend local sources of support – for example, counselling or other specialist services in your area.

You may also wish to investigate whether there is a local patient support group (either for high potassium or for other conditions you are living with), where you can find more resources and get in touch with people in similar situations to yours.

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Tell your doctor if you need support with
the emotional impact of your conditions

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How can I look after my overall health?

Looking after your body and mind can play an important role in supporting
your overall health and wellbeing when living with high potassium and other
health conditions.

Try following these tips to sustain a healthy lifestyle:

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Maintain a healthy weight

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Ask your doctor what weight is healthy for you, and try managing your diet and exercise if you need to lose weight.1

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Take part in regular physical activity

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This could be as simple as going for a walk, doing some gardening or cleaning around the house.

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Try to reduce stress levels

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Lifestyle changes such as getting more sleep and avoiding alcohol, caffeine and nicotine could help with this.3-5 You may also wish to consider taking up yoga, mindfulness or meditation.

Always talk to your doctor before making
any changes to your diet or starting a
new activity

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How can I talk to loved ones about high potassium?

How can I talk to loved ones about high potassium?

It’s natural that the people closest to you will have questions about high potassium and other conditions you are living with. 

You may wish to tell them about this website so they can find out more information and explore the topics they’re most interested in at their own pace.

If your loved one is also your caregiver, they may find the information in our Caregivers section especially useful.

If your loved one does the household shopping or prepares meals for you, it can help to share with them a list of high-and low-potassium foods, and encourage them to read our information on diet and follow any advice your doctor has given you on low-potassium foods and recipes.

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Consider asking a relative to accompany
you at doctor visits, so they can take
notes and support you

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References

1. Rothberg AE, et al. BMJ Open Diabetes Res & Care 2017;5:e000341. doi:10.1136/bmjdrc-2016-000341 2. Hedge SM, et al. Curr Hypertens Rep 2015;17(10):77. 3. Blaxton JM, et al. Gerontol B Psychol Sci Soc Sci 2017;72(3):363-372 4. Richards G, et al. Journal of Psychopharmacology 2015;29(12)1236-1247. 5. Cheon Y, et al. Scientific Reports 2020;10:5134.